Congratulations to Ritu Kulkarni on being awarded an Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) grant from the OU Honors College for her Honors Research Project entitled “Effects of Phosphorus and Fish Kairomones on Life History Traits of Daphnia”.
Our favorite model organism, Daphnia, is featured in an article about “sentinel” organisms and the environment in today’s on-line issue of Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN). Here is a link to the article. Link
Congratulations are in order to Emily Kiehnau, who successfully completed her general exams, and has now officially entered into candidacy in the Ph.D. program here at OU. Great job and congratulations, Emily!
SPRING SEMESTER 2018
BIOL 4983 SEC 005
SENIOR SEMINAR (CAPSTONE)
ADAPTIVE STRATEGIES AND CLIMATE CHANGE
INSTRUCTOR: DR. LAWRENCE J. WEIDER, Dept. of Biology
CLASS TIME: MON 2:30-5:20 PM, SUTTON HALL 312
3 CREDIT HOURS:
This section of Senior Seminar (a.k.a. Capstone) will be offered for Spring 2018 and will cover the broad topic of Adaptation and Climate Change. This course is timely, especially given the rapid rate of environmental change that has been observed over the past several decades with respective to species distributions, timing of seasonal events (e.g. plant phenology/bud-burst), and major glacio-morphological events (e.g. ice-sheet disruption; rapid glacial retreats, thinning of arctic sea ice). Some basic topics will include: environmental genomics of adaptation; genotype x environment interactions related to climate change; species range expansions/contractions (what’s moving where and how fast?); polar ecosystems as sentinels of climate change, host-pathogen-parasite dynamics under various climate change scenarios; using “resurrection ecology”/environmental DNA methods to examine adaptive changes; human adaptation and mitigation to climate change, among other topics.
The course will meet once a week (2 hr 50 min time block) with some lecture/background material being provided, as needed, during the first portion of each weekly meeting. The second (main portion) of each weekly meeting will focus on 1 or 2 topical papers from the primary literature, with student-led discussions/analyses. Individual and group projects will also be part of the course. No tests are planned; however several relatively short (3-5 single-spaced pages) “mini”-term papers will be assigned throughout the semester. One possible outcome/product/exercise from the course would be a group review paper that, with enough effort, might be suitable for submission for publication to a scientific journal. Critical thinking and critical writing will be highlighted in this course. For further information, please contact L.J. Weider at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A new paper just appeared in the journal Hydrobiologia, which highlights the undergraduate research work of lead author, F. Weston Speer. Congratulations to Weston for a job well-done!
A new review article has just appeared in Frontiers in Ecology & Evolution which highlights the impacts of nitrogen and phosphorus across different levels of biological organization (i.e., genomes to natural and agricultural ecosystems). This collaborative work was the result of discussions and presentations at a Royal Society Theo Murphy Conference held at the Kavli International Conference Center at Chicheley Hall, U.K. from 1-2 June 2015.
Congratulations to Christian Brewer, who successfully defended his B.S. Honors (Biology) Thesis today. The title of his thesis is “Phototactic Response in Naïve Daphnia pulicaria to Chemical Cues from an Invasive Predator”. Great job, Christian!